Older job seeker Caryn Hearsh says she is a victim of age discrimination, after being rejected from 743 jobs in the past seven years.
The 62 year-old told her story to Seven News after getting fed up with receiving so many rejection letters.
“They missed out on a good worker. Someone who is not going to get pregnant, who is not going to ring in sick every day,” she said.
With a mortgage and weekly bills, Ms Hearsh said it is impossible for her to survive on the measly Newstart allowance.
“I want the Prime Minister to understand that you cannot live on Newstart,” she said.
By 2030 one third of Australians over 55
By 2030, it’s estimated that one third of Australians will be over 55, with many wanting to keep working into their 70s.
Ian Yates from the Council on Aging said age discrimination is common in the Australian workforce.
“Regrettably, this is a very common scenario – it happens time and time again,” he told Seven News.
Older workers bring skills and experience
According to industrial advocate Miles Heffernan from Discrimination Claims, older workers bring a wealth of experience and skills to a business.
“It is simply crazy for employers to think older workers are past their ‘use by date’ – older workers have experience, and they also act as great mentors for younger workers,” he said.
Mr Heffernan warned businesses that they could be sued for age discrimination if they treat older workers unfairly.
“Discrimination happens when someone is treated less favourably because of their age, so if someone is overlooked for a job or a promotion, or they are sacked for being too old, then they will almost certainly have a strong case of age discrimination, and be entitled to compensation,” he said.
As for Caryn Hearsh, she says that she will continue to look for a job.
“I want to work. Until the man up there wants me, I want to work,” she said.
Miles Heffernan is just one of our specialist team at Discrimination Claims who can help older workers who have experienced discrimination on the basis of their age.
If you have experienced discrimination based on your age, you may be entitled to compensation.
For help and advice, please call our specialist team at Discrimination Claims on
1300 853 837
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